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Fire/ Sudden Illness/ Injury

When there is a fire, or when you ask for an ambulance for emergency medical help, dial 119 to call the fire department. 119 calls can be made 24 hours a day, free of charge.

When you call, state the operator:

  1. whether you are calling to report a fire (Kaji desu) or ask for an ambulance (Kyukyusha o onegai shimasu);
  2. the location of the fire or the patient who needs an ambulance as well as a landmark nearby;
  3. your name and contact information.

* Ambulance services are free of charge and they are available for serious emergencies only.
So, for a slight illness or a minor injury, either use a private car or call a taxi.

Traffic accidents

If you are involved in a traffic accident, take the following steps.

  1. If anyone is injured, give him or her first aid.
  2. Dial 110 to call the police.
  3. Write down the other party's driver's license number, name, address, phone number, age and so on.

* If you are injured, be sure to consult a doctor regardless of the seriousness of the injury.


Japan is an earthquake-prone country. To stay calm in the event of an earthquake, it is strongly advisable to be well prepared in advance. For instance, it is a good idea to keep at hand the items that you will need in the time of disasters such as drinking water, clothes, a portable radio, emergency foods, matches or lighters, candles, a flashlight, a blanket, towels, a first aid kit, copies of your alien registration certificate and passport, etc.

Bear the following in mind when evacuating:

  1. Carry as little as possible and evacuate on foot.
  2. Be on alert for landslides and dangerous cliffs.
  3. Get accurate information from reliable sources such as the TV, radio, City Hall and the fire department.
  4. Cooperate with other people in relief and rescue activities.

When a major earthquake or fire occurs, evacuate to a nearby school or park, among other evacuation sites. You can take refuge in any evacuation site. Make sure you know where the evacuation site is.


If you become entangled in or witness some crime, dial 110 to notify the police. 119 calls can be made 24 hours a day, free of charge.

Tell the police officer:

  1. what happened, like "I was robbed" (Dorobo desu);
  2. when and where the incident occurred;
  3. whether anyone is injured and how bad the injury is (if anyone is injured, the police will arrange for an ambulance);
  4. your name and contact information.

* When you call from a green public telephone, press the red emergency button and dial 110.
To call from a gray public telephone, simply pick up the receiver and dial 110.